03 September 2011

Attending Oktoberfest 2011 and Thoughts about German Genealogy

Yesterday, my wife and I attended the opening day of The Cleveland Labor Day Oktoberfest (http://clevelandoktoberfest.com/) at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds in Berea.

We enjoyed ourselves watching ethnic dance groups, visiting with vendors, and eating brats and potato pancakes (with some beer, of course).

One of the highlights was the hourly performance of a group called Das Glockenspiel. Let me borrow the description from the website: 

The Glockenspiel has become a much beloved fixture at the Oktoberfest. When the hour strikes, the music kicks in and smoke machines billow. With all the jubilance of a night on Bourbon Street, Oktoberfest revelers gather round the flashing lights of the Glockenspiel. Like birds from a cuckoo clock, the slapdancing Schuhplattlers emerge dressed as nuns, old men, monks, or just dressed like themselves. They get the audience to participate in an irreverent dance ... At routine's end, they loose a hail of souvenirs upon those gathered round the Glockenspiel. From beads, to frizbees, t-shirts, key chains and more, Oktoberfest keepsakes rain down so liberally that you'd have to be uncoordinated not to catch something. 

It was only opening day, but by 9 p.m., the fairgrounds midway was already crowded. Other ethnic groups have festivals, but I'm betting that this celebration of ethnic heritage is the largest by far.

That got me to wondering about genealogy and ethnic groups. There are several clubs specializing in ethnic genealogy in the Cleveland area, such as Polish, Hungarian, Italian, and African-American, to name a few, but I'm not aware of any specializing in German genealogy. Certainly the huge number of people with German ancestry would seem to warrant such a group.
I wonder why there is no club for German genealogy in Cleveland. Anybody have any ideas?  

This Blog Is Now Included on Genealogyblog Listing

NEOhio Genealogy Blog is now among the more than 1,900 blogs having to do with genealogy listed on "Geneabloggers, the genealogy community's resource for genealogy blogs."

Go to  http://www.geneabloggers.com/genealogy-blogs/ to check it out.

Hopefully, this will help spread the word about what's going on in genealogy in Northeastern Ohio and the Western Reserve.

01 September 2011

Changes at Western Reserve Historical Society Don't Affect Genealogy Center

The WRHS website (www.wrhs.org) currently offers this cautionary note for people planning a visit to its University Circle complex:
“Please note that the Crawford Auto Aviation Collection galleries will close Monday, September 5, in preparation for a major renovation of the entire Crawford exhibit area. The Crawford galleries are scheduled to reopen in September 2012. All remaining areas of the History Center, including the Library, Kidzibits Family Education Center, Hay-McKinney Mansion, and exhibit galleries will remain open throughout the renovations. 

Please stay tuned to this site for updates on the construction project.”

Speaking of the Hay-McKinney Mansion, did you catch the “Full House” column by Julie E. Washington, in today’s Cleveland Plain Dealer (Thursday, Sept 1, 2011; page E-1). She shares her impressions of this part of the History Center, which she toured after it was re-opened recently following extensive maintenance work. You can access her column, with her historical notes about the mansion, by going to http://www.cleveland.com/insideout/index.ssf/2011/09/full_house_hay-mckinney_mansio.html.

There’s even a video featuring chief curator Dean Zimmerman, who served as Washington's   tour guide during her recent visit.

Please note that the Library, Archives, and Genealogy Center will continue to be open on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.